by Marion Meadows


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Marion Meadows has the talent and the chops to record a truly great album of improvisatory jazz, be it fusion, post-bop, hard bop, cool jazz, or soul-jazz. The soprano saxophonist did, after all, receive his education in jazz from heavyweights like Eddie Daniels, Norman Connors, and the late Joe Henderson. But regrettably, Meadows has spent most of his career catering to smooth jazz stations and offering lightweight background music. Secrets, like so many formulaic smooth sax albums, has a strong Grover Washington, Jr. influence but generally lacks Washington's grit, edginess, or sense of adventure. There have been numerous Washington disciples in smooth jazz (from Najee to Dave Koz to Kenny G to the late George Howard), and most of them have played it much, much safer than their idol -- which is what Meadows does most of the time on Secrets. Overall, this 2009 release is a decidedly conservative affair from Meadows, who plays mostly soprano sax but gets in some tenor sax and clarinet as well. But Secrets does have its moments. This CD contains a memorable version of Pat Metheny's Brazilian-influenced "Here to Stay," and "The Shade Tree" (which is one of Secrets' vocal offerings) has an appealing, Michael Franks-ish quality. Also enjoyable is the Latin-tinged "Sand Dancers." So even though Secrets favors a by-the-book approach most of the time, Meadows occasionally lets loose and gambles with inspiration. One wishes, however, that he did it a lot more often. Secrets will probably be well received by the smooth jazz program directors that Meadows is going after, but he is capable of so much more.

Product Details

Release Date: 04/28/2009
Label: Heads Up
UPC: 0053361315023
catalogNumber: 3150
Rank: 85833

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Marion Meadows   Primary Artist,Clarinet,Saxophone,Soprano Saxophone
Brian Keane   Acoustic Guitar,Piano,Electric Guitar,Keyboards
Charlie Karp   Vocals
Johnny Britt   Trumpet,Vocals,Various
Freddie Fox   Guitar
Perry Hughes   Guitar,Soloist
Jay Rowe   Piano,Soloist
Tony Verdejo   Percussion
Michael White   Drums
Will Brock   Bass,Guitar,Keyboards,keyboard bass
Chip Shearin   Bass,Piano,Bass Guitar,Keyboards
Mike Broening   Keyboards
Anthony Church   Saxophone
Jesse McGuire   Trumpet,Soloist
Sean Patrick Thomas   Vocals
Brian Chartrand   Vocals
Rachel Eckroth   Hammond Organ,fender rhodes,Wurlitzer,Hammond B3
Ted Zimmerman   Trumpet
Steve "Jabari" Kersey   Drums
Orly Penate   Percussion,Drums,Bass Guitar,Keyboards
Maria Meadows   Vocals,Background Vocals
Brian Morgan   Guitar
Philip Hamilton   Vocals
Roberto Vazquez   Piano,Horn
Mel Brown   Bass,Bass Guitar

Technical Credits

Brian Keane   Composer,Producer,Contributor,drum programming,Audio Production
Bobby McFerrin   Composer
Marion Meadows   Composer,Concept
Pat Metheny   Composer
Charlie Karp   Composer
Johnny Britt   Composer,Producer,Engineer,Instrumentation
Dave Love   Executive Producer,Audio Production
Lyle Mays   Composer
Keith Chirgwin   Engineer
Will Brock   Composer,Programming,Producer,Engineer,drum programming
Chip Shearin   Producer,Engineer
Mike Broening   Composer,Programming,Producer,Engineer,Audio Production
Mike White   Engineer
Jeff Frez Albrecht   Engineer
Sean Patrick Thomas   Composer
Orly Penate   Arranger,Composer,Programming
Roberto Vazquez   Composer

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